Artificial Intelligence (AI) represents a significant technological advancement that is increasingly becoming a part of our daily lives due to the convenience and improvements it offers. The importance of this new technology across various sectors is undeniable, but it’s equally important to address the ethical and legal challenges it poses. In response to these challenges, on April 21, 2021, the European Commission presented a bill proposing an ambitious legal framework to regulate the use of AI within the region.
After a few years, this past June, the European Parliament approved the AI bill, kicking off negotiations with EU Member States and the Commission to enact the legislation by 2026.
What Does the EU Law on Artificial Intelligence Entail?
The EU Artificial Intelligence Law aims to establish clear guidelines for the development, implementation, and use of AI within the European Union. Its primary goal is to ensure responsible AI usage that protects citizens’ fundamental rights and fosters innovation.
7 Key Points of the EU Regulation on Artificial Intelligence
- Risk Assessment: Companies developing or using high-risk AI systems must keep detailed records of their operation and performance to ensure traceability and accountability.
- Pre-market Conformity Assessment: High-risk AI systems must undergo a conformity assessment against the regulations before hitting the market.
- Prohibition of Dangerous or Deceptive Applications: The law prohibits AI applications that could endanger people’s safety or lives, such as unregulated mass surveillance systems. It also bans AI systems that trick people into thinking they are interacting with a human.
- Transparency and Explainability: Companies are required to ensure their AI systems are transparent and can provide explanations for their decisions. Users should be informed when interacting with an AI system and understand how it operates.
- Supervision and Regulatory Authorities: The regulation sets up a framework for supervision and regulatory authorities responsible for ensuring compliance and applying sanctions in case of violations.
- Prohibition of Social Scoring Systems: The law forbids the development of AI-based social scoring systems that could be used for controlling or discriminating against individuals.
- Penalties for Non-Compliance: Companies that don’t adhere to these regulations may face substantial financial penalties.
The National and Global Impact of the Artificial Intelligence Law
Overall, the law is expected to bolster societal trust in AI, widen the safe adoption of the technology, and protect citizens from potential misuse by setting ethical standards.
Given the EU’s regulatory reach and global influence, this legislation is poised to have a significant impact beyond EU borders. Companies aiming to operate in the European market must comply with these regulations, potentially creating a ripple effect globally.
This will enable companies to continue developing state-of-the-art technologies, but with an emphasis on responsibility and safety. It’s anticipated to spur global competition and strengthen the European AI market.